The Ooblets Epic exclusivity deal has resulted in “thousands” of “hateful, threatening messages” according to developer Glumberland. The two-person game development team — comprised of Rebecca Cordingley and Ben Wasser — had recently announced that their game would be exclusive to the Epic Games Store and launch and fans are understandably unhappy.
“We really misjudged how angry so many people would be,” the developers said in a message to its Patreon community according to GamesIndustry.biz. “This whole thing has just devastated us. We’ve been getting thousands if not tens of thousands of hateful, threatening messages across every possible platform nonstop. It’s especially hurtful since we’ve had such a positive, supportive relationship with our audience throughout development.”
The Epic exclusivity deal may have resulted in a fan backlash on the creator’s Patreon as well, as they’ve lost nearly 7% of their Patrons in the days since the announcement according to Graphtreon.
The announcement on the game’s official subreddit has several negative messages regarding the announcement of Ooblets Epic exclusivity. The developers subsequently closed the subreddit to new submissions and removed all of the newest threads following the announcement with the exception of the announcement itself.
A cursory examination of the discussion on the game’s official subreddit hasn’t revealed any expressly threatening or hateful messages as far as I could tell. Discussion of the topic on /r/Games has been similarly reasonable, with users pointing out issues with how the announcement was handled and the developer’s subsequent response.
“However, from what I’ve seen from people’s responses on their Discord server, most of it was actually quite civil in expressing their dismay,” read one such comment on /r/Games. “Whenever somebody brought up a genuine point that they can’t play the game anymore because of lack of foreign currency support on the EGS, or even lack of disability controller support, the devs would continue to respond in the most patronising, uncaring and unprofessional ways. If you brought this on yourself, maybe don’t resort to the old “baby gamers so entitled” card. That’s no way to defuse a situation, especially when some of them might have helped fund your game for months to years via Patreon.”